I actually started thinking about the fall and winter holidays in August. Once our summer reading program has ended, it means that it's time to start reading reviews of forthcoming books for the holidays. Professional review publications publish their reviews many months in advance (I've been reviewing 2017 publications for School Library Journal for several months now). Although it's hard to consider books about trick-or-treaters, turkey feasts, Santa, and dreidels when we're winding down the final days of summer, it's important that I order the holiday books no later than the first several weeks of September. I don't want to run the risk of titles going on backorder status and not receiving the titles until right before or even after the holiday has passed (which has happened!); while many families will read holiday books weeks or even months in advance (Halloween books are starting to fly off the shelves!), very few people will want to check out a holiday-related title after the holiday has been celebrated and the novelty has worn off. (Same thing for winter books. If we do a quick display of winter-related titles when our first winter storm of the season threatens, we have trouble keeping it stocked. Patrons have visions of reading The Snowy Day while curled up in blankets and sipping hot cocoa after a romp in the snow if it's December or January. If we do a snow-related display when a March snowstorm looms, those books don't go, because snow isn't that cute in March.)
Keeping that in mind, we recently sent off our orders for new fall and winter holiday titles! Here's what I'm looking forward to reading this fall:
Cats (and dogs, too) are probably not big Halloween fans; too many strangers coming to the door and lots of noise and excitement are not fun for pets. Nick Bruel's hilarious Bad Kitty is back in Bad Kitty, Scaredy-Cat (in picture book form), and she is not a happy camper with all the trick-or-treaters disturbing the peace. Like the previous Bad Kitty picture books, this is also an alphabet book.
If you loved Deanna Caswell and Bob Shea's Guess Who? Haiku, then you will definitely want to grab Boo! Haiku in time for Halloween reading. Just like its predecessor, Boo! Haiku is a fun guessing game of sorts, with clues written in haiku form.
We don't often have multiple hold requests for board books, but it's a different story when Sandra Boynton has a new board book out! Eek! Halloween features chickens freaked out by Halloween happenings.
Need a general book about fall? Hocus Pocus, It's Fall! might be just what you are looking for. It's received excellent reviews (Kirkus Reviews called it "[A] buoyant welcome to the season") and features characters from different diversities!
The Tony Baloney books are cute stories for young readers wanting to transition into chapter books (so far, they are just under 40 pages). Tony Baloney, Yo Ho Ho Halloween! features the young penguin getting ready for the big Halloween parade.
Julie Andrews and Emma Walton Hamilton's Very Fairy Princess series is quite popular, so I know that Attitude of Gratitude will be in demand once we receive it! Gerry's school celebrates Gratitude Day; Gerry knows all about gratitude, but it's hard to be grateful when disaster strikes...especially on Gratitude Day! While not specifically Thanksgiving oriented, the idea of being grateful certainly resonates with the celebration.
Ladybug Girl returns, and she's ready to tell her fans about the things for which she is thankful--her friends, her family, her books, pumpkin pie, and more! Each Ladybug girl story stands alone, so you don't need to read the others before reading Ladybug Girl Gives Thanks.
Next week, I'll tell you all about the Christmas, Hanukkah, and winter books that will be coming our way soon. Because Christmas, Hanukkah, and winter seasons are longer than Halloween and Thanksgiving seasons, I tend to order more winter holiday books than fall holiday books. We have some awesome holiday titles this year, including a book that shows you how to make LEGO Christmas ornaments!
Not quite ready for fall holiday books yet? The Young People's Literature longlist for the National Book Awards has been released!
Burn Baby Burn
March: Book Three
Sachiko: A Nagasaki Bomb Survivor's Story (publication date 10/1)
The Sun is Also a Star (publication date 11/1)
When the Moon Was Ours (publication date 10/4)
When the Sea Turned to Silver (publication date 10/4)
The finalists list will be announced on October 13, with the winners being announced at the annual celebration of honorees on November 16.
Jennifer Schultz, Youth Services Librarian, Fauquier County Public Library